Dr Chaand Nagpaul has been elected as the new leader of the BMA’s GP Committee.
A GP in north London, he replaces Dr Laurence Buckman, who steps down as chair of the GPC after completing his six-year term.
“General practice is facing a number of tough challenges as funding pressures begin to bite and the government’s competition agenda impacts on how care is delivered,” Dr Nagpaul said.
“I am looking forward to meeting with ministers, as I do believe we need a positive, constructive and fresh approach with government so that we can work together to guide the NHS through these difficult times.”
Dr Nagpaul, formerly a negotiator for the committee, has a particular interest in IT issues.
He spoke to EHI primary care last week about the ongoing problems around the allocation of GP IT funding.
Around £186m in funding for IT support is supposed to have been devolved to clinical commissioning groups.
However, in many cases it is still sitting with NHS England’s local area teams or has gone directly to commissioning support units.
“The problem is that the government’s rhetoric about CCGs being in control of this budget is simply not being matched in reality, in fact, it’s been the opposite,” he said.
“CCGs have no handle on the resource and it’s not clear what the how much the resource is?”
When asked about reports of LATs ‘top-slicing’ GP IT funding allocations, Dr Nagpaul said he would be very concerned if this is happening.
He said the demands on GP IT provision are only likely to increase rather than decrease, as it is essential to the day-to-day functioning of the practice.
“This has to be sorted because the government stated explicitly that it’s the responsibility of CCGs and clearly you can’t have devolved responsibility without a devolved budget.”
Three GP negotiators have also been elected; Dr Peter Holden, Dr Beth McCarron-Nash and Dr Richard Vautrey.